https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ChOHnSL7ZCg (warning: NSFW, gore, German humour)
Japanese-style automated garages: http://romaxparking.com/resources.html (videos below the fold)
I wonder if it optimizes for your return. This is, if a person is not returning until 5 days from now, maybe that car can be moved farther out in the parking lot to make room for cars of people who are returning "soon."
Basically, all cars would be placed "far away" and then slowly move to the front.
Maybe it's a "small" airport and this is not needed.
I can envision tons of opportunities to mess with this robot.
For example, the Model S still has brake fluid, washer fluid, coolant, and transmission oil, all which are stored in conventional automotive containers and which would absolutely perform abnormally if the car were raised to vertical.
I also suspect the transaxle has open breathers which would drain oil in the vertical position.
EVs do contain far fewer moving parts and reduce drivetrain complexity over ICE cars, but in every production EV design I've seen you only save one fluid (engine oil). Tesla just hide the car's fluids from their owners by putting plastic covers over everything but the washer fluid and then demanding you take the car to an "annual service."
> ... Chevrolet's goal was to deliver Vegas topped with fluids and ready to drive to the dealership.
> To do this Vega engineers had to design a special engine oil baffle to prevent oil from entering the No. 1 cylinder, ...
However, it was late (22:00) and there were just no cars checking in at the time. I had a mental note to find a YouTube video and then this link popped up... =)
Trade schools and apprenticeships can greatly reduce the burden society must endure in order to level the field for non-skilled labour. I don't believe white and blue colour jobs need such a strong line dividing them and so I'm sure new avenues for selling services or exchanging things of value and different definitions of what we value will emerge.
Of course, this is now getting into an area outside the scope of - and much complicated than - a robot parking system ;-)
1. [Cynically] the unemployed are productive, as a discipline/threat to the employed -- "do as we tell you or you will end up unemployed" [with long list of implicit penalties].
2. The whole idea that humans must work to live is a weird cognitive bias in western political discourse. If you look at actual employment rates they max out around 40% -- children and pensioners don't have paid employment, homemakers aren't paid for their labour, many folks are only partially employed. Yet our whole dialog around how to structure society is based on the axiomatic supposition that full employment is some sort of religious directive.
Wouldn't we be better off looking for more culturally nuanced ways to measure human value than mere fiscal utility over time?
Why do you assume they are not capable of figuring out what they want to do themselves?
This is also a standard feature on the top-end model of the Ford Focus, and probably a bunch of other cars. They don't even need reversing cameras for it - just some carefully positioned 'parking sensors'.
Automating a taxi service doesn't 100% replace the utility of a personal car.
Public transport seems to be generally rather bad in the US, which might make self-driving cars seem useful but other parts of the world often have better public transport and self-driving cars seem a lot less exciting here.
I wonder whether they considered classifying the make/model of the car, perhaps using a simple computer vision approach, and lookup the dimensions in a database of known models.
How can a 1.2 million dollar be feasible when you can hire or even create a valet company for fractions of the costs? I trust a human with my car over a robot at this point in time.
$40 a day is a pittance
What do you imagine a robot is going to do? It will not steal your car, scratch it, over rev it, leave a bad smell, steal your small change.
I'm a bit doubtful about this, since the apparatus is wider than the (typical) driver and would have to leave plenty of space between the cars it drops.
It's also the fact that a Smart car takes up the same space in a parking garage as an original Hummer. I've been in a Costco parking lot where someone in a Mini has parked over the line into the opposing space (overlapping on the front not the sides). I drive an F150 so I pulled tight on him and bumped him and the parking gear rolled me an inch away. I didn't grab much (I think it was pop, water and hotdogs/burgers for a party) and got out while he was still loading his car. I dropped my tailgate and started throwing the cases in (and pushing against the tailgate) so that my truck rocked and hit his car. The guy said "Hey buddy, you're hitting my car." I walk around, look at the fronts of the vehicle, take a picture with my phone (my trucks a company vehicle so we get targeted by all sorts of morons who think we punctured their tire) and I said "I don't know, it looks like you hit me. I'm well within my space."
The TL;DR: to that was "People are idiots who can't park small cars in big spaces" so I'm quite confident parking efficiency can be increased dramatically by decreasing wasted parking space.
You can also presumably halve the amount of driving lanes required. If only 3 robots serve the entire complex there should be enough routes to never run into them having to travel the same lane at once. That alone could likely increase efficiency dramatically; if a lane is wide enough to drive in, it's wide enough to park a car in, and by a guesstimate with no room between vehicles you could likely pack 3 vehicles wide in the width of 2 driving lanes.
You also mention packing the cars in. If the software has access to boarding times, and return times then they could presumably pack vehicles in 5 deep or more. You could have a parking space 10 vehicles deep, if you've got lane access on either side you put the cars in ordered by arrival time. Row 1 gets in at 3pm, row 2 gets in at 3:30pm, etc. and you just unload from the opposing side.
If you made an entire parking lot structure accessible this way, you could presumably increase parking efficiency well beyond a 50% increase with the reduction of all driving lanes.
As for fault it's a parking lot. Under the law in Canada it's the fault of whomever didn't obey the posted signage. If you can't park inside the lines and an accident happens, you're to blame.